The military government is getting ready to hold elections across the country in 2023, which will write a new chapter in history as a turning point for Myanmar’s politics, while the resistance forces are getting ready to step up their efforts to overthrow the military regime.

Military leader General Min Aung Hlaing said in his New Year’s speech on January 1 that he is working to restore the country to normalcy by holding elections nationwide, including ethnic areas, and not to lose democratic rights.

He added that 2023 is the year to start enjoying the fruits of national development and peace, and the military council is moving forward with all doors open on all sides to build a union based on democracy and federalism.

According to Khu Daniel, the secretary 1 of the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), the revolutionary ethnic groups are prepared to overthrow the military government and will not accept elections for the military council or dialogue based on the 2008 constitution.

On January 1, the National Unity Government (NUG) and over 20 revolutionary forces issued a statement stating that any action by the military group is a political ploy or a political trap aimed at reducing the military and political crises they are facing, and they will oppose any activities of holding illegal and sham elections.

In addition, the revolutionary forces believe that only by ending the military coup and establishing a true federal democratic system will we be able to build a sustainable, prosperous union with peace and political stability.

U Than Soe Naing, a political analyst, considers that the year 2023 will not be a year of peace and elections, as expected by the military council, but rather a period of fierce battles that will completely defeat the army of the military council for the establishment of federal democracy.

Since the military coup, the military council has been shooting and killing protesters, expanding military operations across the country, arresting and imprisoning political activists, executing them, and burning homes, but it now announced that there will be a ceasefire for the whole year of 2023.

On December 31, 2022, the Military Council declared a cease-fire from January 1, 2023, to the end of December 2023, in order to continue implementing practical peace talks and achieving peace.

According to ISP-Myanmar, there have been nearly 8,000 clashes across the country since the military coup on February 1, 2021, until the end of 2022.

Veteran politician U Pe Than pointed out that the military council announced the unilateral ceasefire because they wanted to stabilize the situation as there would be elections in 2023.

In late April 2022, the military leader, General Min Aung Hlaing, invited ethnic armed organizations to peace talks, and seven NCA-signatories and three non-NCA signatories attended the talks twice.

Then, on December 27, 2022, the peace committee of the Military Council invited ethnic groups to discuss the needs of the ethnics, including the 2008 Constitution, and five NCA-signatories attended the meeting.

According to political analysts, the peace talks won’t end the current political crisis and military conflict because the EAOs who participated weren’t those who were engaged in combat with the junta army.

The military council asserted that it will continue to develop a path of peace based on the 2008 Constitution and the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA).

The ethnic armed organizations (EAO) and revolutionary forces fighting with the military council decided at the start of this year to wage a final battle to permanently revoke the 2008 constitution and topple the military regime. Than Lwin Times

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